Use your 3 free credit report checks! Order your reports from the government mandated annual credit report and check them for any errors that could be spoiling your score. Look for late payments, delinquencies and misspellings that may average someone else’s report is mixed up with yours.
argument each and every item you’ve flagged as wrong. Protest to the credit bureau that is reporting it in addition as the creditor. Send the bureau copies of your evidence that the information is wrong.
Don’t open any new credit accounts during your credit improvement period.
Do not close any accounts during the improvement period (your credit limits, put together, can help minimize your debt-to-limit ratio).
Pay every bill on time, every time. This is the biggest thing you can do to immediately begin transforming your credit score.
Add a consumer statement to your credit report to offset any big negatives like bankruptcies, liens etc. The statement gives your side of the story. Contact customer service at the credit bureau.
enhance debt-to-credit limit ratio. Pay down your debt to get it below 30% of your total credit limits (all cards combined). Don’t ever go over that threshold of debt or your score will plummet.
Ask for rapid rescoring from your lender. This new course of action allows a new credit score to be generated within a few days after you complete some credit-improving task such as reducing your debt.
Only use your lowest interest rate credit card. Put the others away while you pay them off. Every bit of interest reduced helps when you’re trying to turn your credit around.
Have a stable address. use at the minimum 2 years in one place. Credit reports are said to give some weight to this.
Create a stable employment history. Don’t switch from job to job. Creditors like stability.
Finish the next rung in your education. Some scoring systems may factor in education level.
Do not get arrested, or sued. Both can show up on your report.
Watch your mail. Pursue a bill you’re expecting if it doesn’t arrive as scheduled. If you don’t, you’ll be penalized already if the bill never arrives.
Have highly negative items removed as soon as possible. Request bankruptcies, tax liens, foreclosures etc., be removed. 7 years is the maximum time they may be reported. There is no MINIMUM time they must keep, so ask, and keep asking.
Request old negative information be removed from your report. Once you are in good standing with a creditor, request that an old item (for example, a late payment) be removed and no longer reported. There is no minimum limit that this information must stay on your report. Ask for this as a goodwill measure.
Know exactly what you make each month. Cut costs and use the difference to pay toward debt.
Don’t foolishly endanger your identity by carrying every credit card you possess. Carry only your dominant card. Leave your social security card and other non-basic documents at home. Identity theft can take months to sort by and your score could be devastated.
Don’t ever close your oldest accounts – these give your credit history its timeline and the longer, the better.
Have a mix of credit. This includes retail store charges, car loans, credit cards, gas card, mortgage, etc.
Have someone cosign for a credit card. If you can’t get credit, ask a close friend or family member with good credit to add you to their account as a signer. Just make sure to pay those bills or your co-signer’s credit will suffer!
Don’t ever max out a credit card by combining all your debt on it if it puts you near your credit limit. Instead, spread a large debt over two or more low interest cards.
Call creditors to ask for a lower interest rate. Many will give it to you. If you don’t ask, they won’t offer.
Work out a payment plan with creditors if you’re struggling. This will prevent your account from being turned over to collection agencies – the kiss of death to your credit score.
Ask a family member for a loan to pay off debt; their terms will likely be far more agreeable.
Increase your credit limits. This will help your debt-to-limit ratio (or credit utilization ratio). When your limits go higher, your existing debt represents a lesser percentage of your total obtainable credit (the goal is to bring it under 30%). But do NOT increase your balances.
Pay bills closest when they arrive. If you send the money out before the next statement is generated, your creditor will report your paid balance ($0) versus your statement balance (what you owed).
Use old cards sometimes. Your oldest accounts count toward your credit history length (long is good) but may not be factored in if you don’t use them every 6 months or so.
Don’t neglect other bills. Don’t assume you just have to pay credit cards and loans on time to keep your credit spiffy. These days utility, phone companies and others are reporting to credit bureaus.
Avoid secured cards. Though they’re usually pitched as a way to establish credit, often they’re viewed as the card of last resort for people who can’t manager credit. There’s argument as to whether a secured card is assessed differently when computing your score. Some say yes, others say no. If not, a secured card could help your case.
Bring delinquent accounts up to date. Though it could take you months, as soon as you “square” one account, it will begin to discarded its negative stigma in 6 months or so.
Prune your cards. More cards are NOT better. 15 or 20 are way too many. Too much credit limit worries lenders, who fear you may get in over your head. Don’t close your oldest cards, but slowly begin closing excess accounts over time. the time of action should occur over a year or so.
Open checking and savings accounts at your local bank and keep them in good standing.
Try your bank for a credit card. If you can’t get a major credit card, go to the bank where you keep up your checking accounts. They may give you a bank card with a small limit. Treat it well and your score will enhance.
Apply for a loan that you can manager. The best way to build credit score is to manager credit responsibly. Apply for a mortgage or car loan and pay it on time every month.
Talk to a live person. Creditors often have real operators to talk to; they’re a good place to start in a argument. If you don’t receive what you want, contact the credit bureau to argument negative items on your report.
Automate your payments. Do not leave bill paying to chance. Have payments auto-deducted from your account and never worry again. The whole setup course of action will take just a associate of hours. (Make sure you have overdraft protection on a savings account).
Cut deals. When you pay a creditor, ask them to remove a negative notice about you at the same time. Many are happy to do this. It’s appropriate to ask for a written potential before sending your payment.
Always be polite instead of aggressive when dealing with creditors and credit bureau personnel. Remember that they are people with the strength to grant your requests. You can always threaten legal action later.
Keep a small balance on your cards; it may be better than carrying a $0 balance. It shows you can manager credit wisely.
Don’t forget to order your credit score. They cost around $5 from annualcreditreport.com. Benchmark your score every year so you can measure its improvement. Good luck!